As a man who grew up Catholic I have to say I'm horrified at all this breaking news that shows how the church and the current Pope covered up child molestations, booze and everything else under the sun. The LA Times wrote a story about the multi-billion dollar order that is flourishing in Mexico: The Legion of Christ
As the Catholic Church is rocked by scandals about abusive priests and the failure of its hierarchy to confront them, Maciel in many ways embodies the insidiousness of the problem.
Maciel was dogged for years by allegations that he sexually molested young men studying to be priests, had affairs with women and was a drug addict. He evaded sanction thanks in large part to the privileged status granted him by the late Pope John Paul II. Only in 2006 did John Paul's successor, Benedict XVI, discipline Maciel by ordering him to stop functioning as a priest; by then, Maciel was 85.
Maciel was popular at the Vatican because the Legion was one of the fastest growing orders in the Catholic Church, able to produce wealth and recruit priests at a time of declining memberships and severe shortages in the clergy -- and because it espoused the conservative brand of Catholicism that recent popes have favored.
Today the Legionaries, as they are known, operate in nearly 40 countries with 800 priests, 2,600 seminarians and a lay branch called Regnum Christi ("Christ's Kingdom") that has more than 75,000 members....read on
The horror. Read the full article to understand the depths of depravity that Rev. Marcial Maciel, the Saint of their Catholic order, sank into. It truly is disgusting beyond belief.
Howie has a great story up about all of this and asks the question that many people are asking: Should The Catholic Hierarchy Be Punished For Running A Criminal Organization?
You may have seen one of their stars on FOX News: Jonathan Morris. He's been on numerous times and Digby has an example of the type of stuff this guy writes for their website.
FOX News has been given this man a huge platform and they should have him disclose that he's part of the Legion of Christ. I know, a priest isn't just a priest anymore.
UPDATE 1: The Vatican says it's unfair of people to criticise the Pope over the sex abuse cases.
Facing the most serious crisis since Pope Benedict XVI took office, officials inside the Vatican describe the recent focus on the pope and abuse as unexpected and unfair in light of recent efforts to prevent such abuse.
You see, they understand NOW that silencing the children of abuse for all those years and letting pedophiles continue to interact with children was a bad thing.
Archbishop Timothy Dolan was greeted with applause after finishing Palm Sunday Mass by defending Pope Benedict XVI against suggestions he aided cover-ups of reports of child abuse.
What the Pope did in Germany should stay in Germany.
UPDATE 3 Pope Remains Silent On Abuse Case In Germany
It's all petty gossip to the Pope via NPR.
Pope Benedict XVI has apologized to abuse victims in Ireland, but has yet to speak out about the growing church abuse scandal in his native Germany.
In particular, he has been silent about the case of a priest who was treated for molesting boys in Munich in the 1980s, when the current pope was archbishop of Munich.
The doctor who treated the abusive priest says his warnings went unheeded.